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Universal e-Book Scanner

DRM-proof optical converter
  (+5, -1)
(+5, -1)
  [vote for,

I'm about to get a Kindle, and it bothers me that I will pay for digital content that I won't be able to access several decades from now. Neither the device nor the company that makes it is guaranteed to survive.

This contraption combines a camera, OCR software, and a mechanical actuator to push the reader's buttons, as well as a cradle for the e-Book reader at an appropriate distance from the camera. [An alternate realization might be a camera unit and a wirelessly actuated mechanical "button pusher" to do away with the cradle]

To use the device, you load the book into your reader, put the reader in the cradle, and push "start".

The scanner pushes the "next page" button and snaps a picture of the page, converting it to digital text (or TIF files, as you prefer) as it goes along, without requiring further interaction from the user.

The result is a PDF/TXT/TIF/etc. file that you can load on a different device, print, or keep around for archival purposes.

The device can include settings for known readers, as well as a "custom" mode that will allow the user to program how to handle page transitions, chapter transitions, how long to pause between pages, etc.

cowtamer, Jan 03 2010

Robotic Book scanner http://www.geocitie...e/lego/fabs_en.html
ho-made! [afinehowdoyoudo, Jan 03 2010]

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       The contraption described would probably work. I suppose you could use the same type of device to digitize a hard copy book from the library and save money by just borrowing books! But then you don't have the convenience of so many volumes loaded on a single Kindle.   

       The Kindle ought to just have an encrypted file format that you can store on a microSD card. You retrieve the file only by use of a registered software program. Somebody would, of course, crack/hack the security features...which makes me wonder--why can't they just hack the Kindle?
ShaneSezWhat, Jan 03 2010

       Baked.. Google robotic book scanner for example
afinehowdoyoudo, Jan 03 2010

       Well, somebody actually _has_ hacked the Kindle--but I don't want to count on such hacks always working.   

       This idea is more of a "hard hack" (which would, in fact, be a significantly _simplified_ robotic book scanner) to avoid resorting to any illegal means of defeating someone else's DRM.   

       (To the best of my knowledge, taking a picture of something you own to make backup copies is not illegal -- YET :) ]
cowtamer, Jan 03 2010

       //taking a picture of something you own to make backup copies is not illegal -- YET//   

       Actually, it is. I'm not going to sit here and tell you that it should be, but if you don't own the *copy* *rights*, you can't make copies. Those restrictions will explicitly include photographic and electronic storage and retrieval.
lurch, Jan 03 2010

       IANAL, but as far as I know, Fair Use does allow you to make copies of something you owns, so long as you don't distribute those copies to anyone else.
goldbb, Jan 04 2010

       That this is illegal is exactly why it's necessary. If the world had a sane framework of copyright law, we wouldn't have to worry about device owners remotely bricking our devices or stealing the content we already paid for. Until then, something like this would make an excellent bridge between the convenience of e-books and the reassurance of nonproprietary formats. I for one would not invest in an e-book reader unless I had a device like this; as it stands, it's just too much trouble to hack the conversions - it takes me twenty minutes just to turn a PDF e-book into HTML, and that's with special tools.   

gisho, Jan 04 2010


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